Category Archives: court

“People with Something to Hide”: the #IRS and Lois Lerner

Hey, remember this?

Yes indeed: words spoken by none other than Barack Obama himself. Of course, that was back in 2010 when he was discussing Campaign Finance Reform, a concern which almost sounds quaint in comparison to the Scandal carousel this White House has since become.

Just the same, keep that quote in mind as you watch the following about our ol’ buddy, Lois “I-have-nothing-to-hide-so-I’m-Pleading-the-Fifth” Lerner from the IRS:

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The Tyranny of Arbitrary Laws

Is the United States still the “Land Of The Free”? Well, most of us certainly go through our day believing we are.

Part of that belief is an assumption that, as long as we don’t try to do something wrong, illicit, or illegal, we won’t run afoul of the law. We also assume that if someone DOES blatantly break the law, they’ll be punished for it. Quickly and fairly, those people will be carted off to jail.

monopoly117In years past both of those may have been safe assumptions, yet increasingly they’re no longer the case.

We’re seeing reports almost daily: from the incarceration of the 19-year-old young man who cracked a joke (in extremely bad taste, I agree, but still …just a joke) on Facebook, to the arrest of the 8th-grade kid who refused to remove his NRA t-shirt, to the non-arrest of David Gregory when he openly flouted the actual gun laws of Washington DC late last year.

When kids are threatened with jail for merely wearing clothes, and TV personalities are excused for breaking the law because prosecuting them “would not promote public safety…”, we’ve established two sets of laws:

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Mr. Virtual President: “Get the Government out of the Marriage business, completely…”

v-potus-headerA very short, and very wise, opinion on the entire DOMA decision from the one-and-only Bill Whittle, speaking as his alter-ego, Mr. Virtual President.

I’m completely in agreement with Bill here: this isn’t an argument for or against traditional marriage, or any other kind. It’s that Government has once again intruded into an area where it should have no opinion whatsoever. By allowing the Federal Government to redefine marriage to reflect what a certain segment of society WANTS it to be, we’ve taken another step down the path towards an all-powerful State, with that State able to re-define society according to its whims.

There’s only one winner when that happens: the State.

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After this Judge’s decision, I gotta ask: What does “being a kid” even MEAN these days?

“It’s for the children”.

group-children

Just say those four words to any number of people nowadays, and you’ll elicit an involuntary shudder from them.  That’s because more and more, “the children” are used as an all-purpose bludgeon by one particular group to get their way (*cough*… Liberals!!… *cough*). And generally we find out later that these arguments have either nothing to do with kids, or has actually made them less safe, not more.

Seriously: you see. And hear. New uses. Of this rationale. Seemingly. Every. Single. Day.

So much so that I barely batted an eye when I read the following on CNN:

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Obama and the W.A.R.N. Act – “Crime Pays”

There has been almost NO coverage on the following topic. I’d say that I could explain it, short (well, short by MY standards) and sweet…but, there’s simply too much to it, and we all deserve to know the FULL story.

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Usually, when you commit a crime and get caught, …there are consequences. This is straight out of ‘Social Contract 101’: YOU break the law; YOU pay the fine; YOU serve the time.

Except….if you’re the current Administration.

President Obama’s team has given the defense industry permission to not only break the law, but is telling them that even if they get fined for doing so, YOU, the American Taxpayer, will pick up the tab.

Only, in addition to this king-sized “freebie” for employers, there’s a much more sinister side to the issue.

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Have you ever heard of the WARN Act?  Probably not, based on the absolute dearth of news reports on it. It is the “Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act“, which requires employers with at least 100 employees to provide written notification to affected employees 60 days before ordering certain plant closings, or mass layoffs if they are reasonably foreseeable.  Makes sense, right?

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Suit Yourself

We just discussed the need to solve the problem of lawsuit abuse the other day (In Lawsuits We Trust). Please consider this the most recent, and perhaps best, example of just why such reform is needed.

Read through this first, courtesy of Bill Hanstock at sbnation.com:

Really, this could be a primer on how NOT to file a suit.

From Bill:

“What can we learn about the plaintiff from this document? Well, we know first of all that he owns a typewriter, but not a computer. We can further assume that he had only one piece of paper to work with, given the amount of “corrections” made on the fly.

He also appears to be technically filing for “COPRIGHT INFRINGEMENTU” which may not be the same thing as copyright infringement. Hopefully he didn’t accidentally begin a case about something having to do with police rights.”

Even better, Johnnie N. Perry goes so far as refer to his invention as a “three-point stands”. Here’s Mr. Perry’s invention:

Improper pluralization aside, when I think “three points”, I’m generally looking for..three points.

Call me crazy.

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My advice: if you are thinking of filing a “COPRIGHT INFRINGEMENTU” suit, do yourself a favor —  find a computer, make sure it has SpellCheck, or at the very least hire a 4th grader as your proof reader.

Otherwise, you could end up as one very unhappy “PALINTIFF“.

In Lawsuits We Trust

Stick with me here: there’s good news towards the end of this.

Every year there are thousands upon thousands of lawsuits filed in the United States, with many of them being patently ridiculous. According to facesoflawsuitabuse.org, here are some of the most outrageous ones from 2011 alone:

•A kidnapped couple is sued by a convict who kidnapped them because they did not aid him in evading police.

•A mother is sued by her adult children because she sent cards that did not include gifts and because she allegedly plays favorites.

•A woman files a lawsuit asking for $5 million after she disagrees with a store over an 80 cent refund she was supposed to receive.

•A mother files a lawsuit against an exclusive preschool because of her child’s college prospects.

•A man sued Procter & Gamble over toothpaste left in the tube.

•A woman files a lawsuit because of a movie trailer that does not have enough driving in it. The trailer the movie was for? ‘Drive.’

The entire funny-yet-depressing list can be found here.

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Now the truly troubling aspect of all this is that these companies had to defend themselves in court, usually racking up significant costs. Those costs get put right back into the price of their products, and we all end up paying more. Isn’t that great?

Why is nothing being done about this by our elected leaders? What about some ideas from the folks who always seem to be “fixing” everything, other than things which actually need fixing?

No more calls; we have a winner! An individual state did take a significant step towards curbing this insanity.

From tennessean.com:

Tennessee Republicans have a message for those filing civil lawsuits: You better make sure your facts are in order or you could be on the hook for up to $10,000 in attorney fees for the other side.

Lawmakers last week approved legislation that would penalize people who file lawsuits that are later dismissed as baseless. They would have to pay up to $10,000 to cover court costs and their opponent’s attorney fees.

“It is a very limited loser-pays bill,” said Rep. Vance Dennis, R-Savannah, the bill’s House sponsor. “It goes to purely frivolous lawsuits, lawsuits that don’t have any merit.”

I read that and got a little verklempt. It is possible to look at a problem and pass legislation that might help fix the problem! God bless those crazy, knuckle-dragging, bible-clinging GOP Tennesseans for bringing some common-sense to the courtrooms of America, or at least Tennessee. For the moment, that makes one significant problem addressed….

………and at least a million to go.

Hey, it’s a start.

Support your local Occupod

Some of the commenters and I were having a conversation about this yesterday.

If the “Cleveland 5” was from the TEA PARTY, do you think today’s news would only be found on a few blogs and the local Cleveland news or, just maybe, some national news agency (like, ALL of them) would be gathered outside the courthouse right now?

But since it concerns the harmless, mostly-peaceful Occupoddos? Nothing to see here, folks….

From today’s newsnet5.com:

CLEVELAND Dozens of members of Occupy Cleveland showed up at a Cleveland courthouse to support the five people charged in connection with an alleged plot to blow up a northeast Ohio bridge.

The five suspects — 21-year-old Connor Stevens, 24-year-old Joshua Stafford (aka “Skully”), 26-year-old Douglas Wright (aka “Cyco), 20-year-old Brandon Baxter (aka “Skabby”) and 37-year-old Anthony Hayne (aka “Tony” & “Billy”) – pleaded not guilty during their arraignment Monday morning.

The suspects had the charges — conspiracy and attempted use of explosive material to damage physical property affecting interstate commerce — read to them in open court.

In all, about 50 members of the Occupy Cleveland group went into courthouse. After the arrests were made, Occupy Cleveland said the five suspects were associated with the group, but they were “in no way representing or acting on behalf of Occupy Cleveland.”

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So, the Occupy Guys immediately distanced themselves from these 5 morons terrorists, since they didn’t represent the cause, …and then dozens of Cleveland Occupy members show up at the courthouse to show their support …..for the people who don’t represent their beliefs.

Uh-huh.

New slogan for the Occupoddos: “We blame the fact that we’re idiots on the 1%”.